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It is a brand-new opportunity, like the outrageous perk county players have always enjoyed: scoring a century against the universities in April, retiring with a bogus groin strain and hoping no one will remember how second-rate it was when the club committee study the averages and consider new contracts in September.

Matthew Engel puts England's series agaisnt Bangladesh in context

Oct 26, 2003 Tweet | Share

You can never say that he is out of form. He is a volcano waiting to explode and we hope he doesn't do that against us in the one-dayers."

Daryl Tuffey hints that Sachin Tendulkar's modest form may be the calm before the storm

Oct 22, 2003 Tweet | Share

Realistically it's a very slim chance. It's like Dumb and Dumber, when the girl says, `You've got a one in a million chance of sleeping with me,' and Jim Carrey says, `So you're saying I've got a chance' ... I live by that."

Michael Slater on his chances of an international recall

Oct 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

I have no grudge against the fans since I know how they feel.

Bangaldesh captain Khaled Mahmud on the crowd's increasing frustration with his performances

Oct 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

Blood came out like water as soon as the gauze was removed ... This is life.

Sourav Ganguly waxes philosophical, talking about the boil on his thigh that forced him to miss the Mohali Test against New Zealand

Oct 19, 2003 Tweet | Share

The pace bowlers were very good but I expected the spinners to turn the ball more. As for Ashley Giles - world-class bowler that he is - I thought he might be more effective."

Nafees Iqbal gives his thoughts on the England bowling after his 118 for Bangladesh A

Oct 19, 2003 Tweet | Share

I don't know how you Indians live here.

New Zealand's Lou Vincent struggles to adjust to the heat on tour

Oct 17, 2003 Tweet | Share

When I was on 70, they kept reminding me 77 was my highest score, and when I got past that, they kept reminding me I was after my first hundred as well."

Stuart Carlisle after his maiden Test century in Australia

Oct 17, 2003 Tweet | Share

Our target remains the same: individual improvement. We kept doing it in Multan and came close to a victory against Pakistan. If we can enhance that, we could possibly end our losing streak.

Dav Whatmore looks ahead to Bangladesh's Test series against England

Oct 12, 2003 Tweet | Share

They are advocating voluntary euthanasia when what the game needs is an injection of confidence in its inherently good health.

Des Wilson, the ECB's chairman of corporate affairs, hits back at those calling for reform of English cricket

Oct 9, 2003 Tweet | Share

When he gets back, I'll have to tell him he's grown.

Lancashire's signing, Dominic Cork, who last season sledged his captain-to-be, Warren Hegg, accusing him of having "short, fat, hairy legs"

Oct 7, 2003 Tweet | Share

I don't think I've actually drunk a beer for 15 years, except a few Guinnesses in Dublin, where it's the law.

Ian Botham exorcises his past as he launches a new range of wines

Oct 2, 2003 Tweet | Share

C'mon Saqi!

Deep Dasgupta to Sadagoppan Ramesh after Ramesh bowled a gentle offspinner to Jacob Oram in the India A v New Zealanders game at Rajkot

Oct 2, 2003 Tweet | Share

I don't enjoy the game as much as I used to. The challenges are running out for me. I suppose going out on your first date is always more exciting than when you've been married for 20 years."

Adam Hollioake reveals his dwindling enthusiasm for the game

Oct 1, 2003 Tweet | Share

Shit, I better not get out first ball after that.

Graham Thorpe admits to his nervousness after he had been given a tumultous reception on his Test comeback at The Oval in September. He went on to score a hundred

Oct 0, 2003 Tweet | Share

All those queuing up for the opening slot don't have it in them. They are all crap."

Geoff Boycott cheers up those in contention to open the batting for India

Sep 29, 2003 Tweet | Share

I am not sure if such simulated training is going to be a help. You mean to say if we tour Australia we need to have a beer-can in our hands all the time?"

Harbhajan Singh, on New Zealand training under conditions simulating the noise and din at Indian cricket grounds

Sep 22, 2003 Tweet | Share

Darren Gough's omission was a unanimous decision, at least according to [David] Graveney, and it is probably not as dicey as taking just three frontline pace bowlers to a part of the world where E-coli can be as potent as Murali.

Derek Pringle muses over England's squad selection

Sep 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

Of course, Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne would always be in it and so not able to take wickets."

Michael Vaughan welcomes the idea of a sin-bin for Test cricket

Sep 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

We welcome them with open hearts and minds, and they should also tour with open minds. They will be looked after like state guests and that's our promise."

Former Pakistan captain Wasim Bari gets quite excited about South Africa's on-off tour being back on

Sep 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

I can party as good as the rest of them.

Michael Vaughan in post-season relaxing mode

Sep 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

We've been linked with everybody. We have read Alec Stewart, we have read David Byas and we have read Uncle Tom Cobbleigh and all."

Colin Graves, Yorkshire's chief executive, grows tired with speculation about Dermot Reeve joining as coach

Sep 19, 2003 Tweet | Share

Those who run cricket in this country, especially at the domestic level, are for the most part a self-serving, pusillanimous and self-important bunch of myopic dinosaurs unable to take any but the shortest-term view of everything."

Henry Blofeld offers his view of those in charge of English cricket, in the Independent

Sep 15, 2003 Tweet | Share

Let's get Alec Bedser out.

Glamorgan captain Robert Croft's rallying call to his team when Martin Bicknell of Surrey came out to bat in their National League match

Sep 14, 2003 Tweet | Share

The decision destroyed my confidence, which has always been fragile. I need people to support and back me -- and I was mentally broken by being left out by England.

Regrets? Robin Smith has a few, as he announces his retirement at the age of 40

Sep 12, 2003 Tweet | Share

He [Graeme Smith] talks too much and doesn't deliver on all the promises he makes.

Daryll Cullinan puts in his bid for a Test recall

Sep 10, 2003 Tweet | Share

The bowlers bowled like men who had met a Dementor on the way into the ground and knew that there was no hope left in the world.

Simon Barnes, writing in the Times on England's performance at The Oval

Sep 9, 2003 Tweet | Share

No. Nayan Mongia should keep the wickets."

Nayan Mongia, when asked if Rahul Dravid should continue keeping wicket in one-day internationals

Sep 7, 2003 Tweet | Share

The Oval is as ugly as sin and set amidst even uglier architecture, the latest addition to which - the Swiss Re building - resembles a giant penis.

The Guardian's Matthew Engel argues his case for life membership of Surrey

Sep 5, 2003 Tweet | Share

We're trying our arses off and we'll continue to do so.

Ashley Giles in response to heckling from the crowd on the first day of the Oval Test

Sep 4, 2003 Tweet | Share

The fact that his wicketkeeping has been poor and that in the last, disastrous Test at Headingley he batted as though caught in somebody's headlights has plainly done nothing to budge the selectors. Why not? Because it is felt Stewart deserves a gloriously sentimental farewell.

James Lawton, writing in the Independent, on the decision to play Alec Stewart at The Oval

Sep 1, 2003 Tweet | Share

I know the players are with me and they think I should have been picked - that's all that matters to me.

Darren Gough reacts to his omission from England's one-day squad

Aug 29, 2003 Tweet | Share

They've got the contracts they want, they take blokes out of games and they still blame the nursery of the game."

New Zealand's John Bracewell lets rip at the English system

Aug 28, 2003 Tweet | Share

Ask me that again next month, when you're all in Dhaka and I'm in Rome, watching Chelsea playing Lazio!"

Alec Stewart, when asked if he regretted announcing his retirement

Aug 28, 2003 Tweet | Share

England's defeat at Headingley was the biggest cock-up I've ever seen in Test cricket."

Ian Botham takes aim and sprays vitriol all over the back pages of the Mirror

Aug 26, 2003 Tweet | Share

I don't think they think I'm very good, to be honest. They question everything I do.

Andrew Flintoff, tongue firmly in cheek, on South Africa's constant attempts to unsettle him

Aug 26, 2003 Tweet | Share

If Trescothick had tried to get me off the field when batting well, I'd have hit him with my bat.

Geoff Boycott makes clear his disgust at England's decision to go off for bad light at Headingley

Aug 25, 2003 Tweet | Share

We didn't bowl well. The guys knew the plan, but the harder they tried, the less they seemed to land it in the right areas."

England's coach Duncan Fletcher clearly has a few communication problems

Aug 24, 2003 Tweet | Share

A lot of people say that suits my game, to hang in, to play terribly and to look horrible. I was able to do that.

Gary Kirsten meets expectations with his hundred on the first day of the Headingley Test

Aug 21, 2003 Tweet | Share

If we had lost at Trent Bridge, I had visions of my head appearing on a turnip like Graham Taylor on the back pages."

Michael Vaughan reflects on the pressures of the tabloid press

Aug 20, 2003 Tweet | Share

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The laundry
© Satish Acharya

The drop
© Satish Acharya

Hand of god
© Satish Acharya

The gift
© Satish Acharya

The toss
© Satish Acharya

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What They Said About

'The heartbeat of the team'

Haroon Lorgat, the CSA chief executive

"He's a guy who has always played under a lot of pressure ... he has always found the inner strength to make sure he concentrates on his own performances, and he leads the team irrespective of what perceptions of him are, his presence alone will be sorely missed."

Russell Domingo, the South Africa coach